Let fire inspire

Captivated by the magic of working with glass, Rebecca Weddell creates beautiful and unique lampwork beads and offers a range of beadmaking courses.

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Artwave Festival

STOP PRESS: I'm delighted to be opening the workshop this summer as part of the Artwave Festival!

Artwave is an annual festival of artists and makers across the Lewes district, East Sussex. It is managed and supported by Lewes District Council, with kind sponsorship from supporters and advertisers.

Summer 2017 saw me participate at one of the central Lewes Artwave locations, but this year I'm welcoming visitors to my workshop here at Village Works in the centre of East Hoathly, part of Artwave's northeast trail. You'll be able to watch me demonstrate the captivating art of lampwork glass bead making at the torch flame, and there will be beads and jewellery for sale.

If the sight of lampwork glass bead making lights your fire, why not find out about my courses?

The Artwave Festival runs from Saturday August 18 until Sunday September 2.
During the festival my workshop is open from 11am to 5pm on Fridays, weekends and the bank holiday Monday.
Saturday & Sunday - August 18 & 19
Friday, Saturday, Sunday & bank holiday Monday - August 24, 25, 26 & 27
Friday, Saturday & Sunday - August 31, September 1 & 2


I'm back where I started

...and I couldn't be happier about it!

When I first encountered the art of lampwork glass beadmaking in 2003 it was the process that captivated me, not the end result. Yes the beads were nice, but what actually lit my fire was the journey from cold, hard, brittle glass rods to smooth, flowing amorphous liquid in the torch flame - that, that was the thing. The beads themselves, at the start at least, were just a pretty bonus.


It had started as a hobby, and I began selling my beads on eBay, then on my own website. 'You ought to do craft fairs', I started to hear. 'Why don't you make jewellery? I want to wear your beads - but they're no good to me just as beads! What do I do with them if they're just beads?'

So pretty soon I was learning how to make jewellery, and in fact I became a pretty accomplished chainmailer and wireworker. But I didn't love it. I found I was resenting the feeling that I ought to be spending my time making jewellery rather than making beads, so as to have a finished product to sell. That's what people were telling me I needed to do. I listened to them, rather than to my inner voice. This other stuff began to be what defined me.

Cue confusion. Weren't my beads themselves a finished product? Not to some, no. And it had been for those people that I changed my focus. A mistake.


Looking back now I can see that I had become distracted from the things that I absolutely love - which are spending as much time as possible in my workshop both making beads and teaching other people how to make beads. Because lampwork glass beadmaking is absolutely mesmerising, and I find it a real privilege to inspire others - when I recognise that spark in my students, when they discover the magic of manipulating glass in the torch flame for themselves, there's no better feeling.

My beads become components in other people's work. I love that. They have an exciting life beyond my workbench. They're out there. That's great! I absolutely love seeing what my bead-buying customers do with my beads - their work takes my breath away.

I do make some jewellery. I love to make and wear bracelets out of my beads - I have one for every outfit - and I enjoy wearing my sterling silver and lampwork glass bead wirework earrings. I participate in bead events and in local open studio festivals.


But my focus - after nearly a decade and a half of feeling I ought to spread myself thinner across a variety of jewellery-making tasks in order to appeal to a wider market - is back on the beads, and on teaching people how to make them too. Because what absolutely drives me is the process of letting fire inspire.

I'm Rebecca.
I'm a glass artist and lampwork glass beadmaking tutor.
It is those things which define me.


The Workshop, 8 Village Works, London Road, East Hoathly
Lewes, East Sussex, BN8 6QA
01825 840638

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